Ups and Sustainability

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Background

In the case of UPS, the focus throughout the case was the journey as a company to create its first corporate sustainability report, “Operating in Unison”. UPS was founded in 1907 by Jim Casey as a messaging service, which delivered messages to customers through couriers by way of bicycle. Even in the beginnings of UPS the root of the company’s values are apparent and as technology became more advanced, the company adapted showing more importantly the company’s roots in sustainability. There was a focus on courtesy to the customer, 24 hour service, and competitive rates. When cars became available to consumers, Jim invested in them and used them to get packages out in a timely manner. When telephones became available and messaging was no longer in demand, packages became the focus. With these adaptations and commitment to the consumer, UPS showed promise. Today those values and plans have been written on paper and have become strategy to UPS. The commitment to the customer remained constant and was the drive behind the slogan “What Can Brown Do For You?”. There is still a commitment to sustainability through use of technology as UPS has some of the best talent in supply chain management to keep operations as efficient as possible and its adaptation for the “new” consumer who purchases online and tracks packages through UPS’s website. All these values and sustainability tactics are enough for any business to exist and be financially successful but UPS did not want to just exist and be financially successful shown by constantly looking for ways to improve the company as a whole. In 2002 UPS decided to take sustainability a step further and create a CSR (Corporate Sustainability Report) from information they were already gathering in-house. The report broke UPS’s efforts and goals into two categories, Environment and Community.

In 1994, years before going public with its CSR report, David Guernsy, an environmental engineer hired by the...
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